Posts

Telephone Cold Calling: How to prevent common initial contact objections.

Tired of getting common initial contact objections such as, "Not interested, We already have someone, Just send me your literature, No time, Not a priority," and on and on.90+% of cold call contacting is shut down immediately with these types of initial contact objections. That's extremely inefficient and, for many, a self-esteem damaging activity. It's time to reverse that number and make it 90+% getting to interview the prospect, and less than 10% rejection responses that will require a different approach.I'm not too fond of these objections either, and I will do whatever I can to prevent them from entering my prospect's mind.Recall from an earlier blog, "Why You Get the Objections You Get" that the core Buyer Beliefs have not yet been established. As such, the prospect doesn't recognize you're calling to help them with a need they may or may not be consciously aware of at the moment you call. So, you'll have to start the conversation …

Can you sell big-ticket complex items over the phone?

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Before you say, what you sell is different and can’t be sold over the phone, consider these possible scenarios.The person calling was previously a buyer with another company and is now with a different company. The person calling has already done their research and has chosen what you sell and now needs to work out the details and place the order. Your value proposition is so obvious, your company so credible, and the customer’s need is so strong that it’s just a matter of working out the logistics.All of these scenarios are true, and I’ve personally experienced all of them and many more. So yes, you can sell anything and everything by telephone – even million-dollar sales are possible. My personal best was a $6 million sale of engineer products. Our Major Account Call Center (MACC) made sales ranging from $25K to $250K and three over a million during our first year. They sold fueling services, mobile maintenance, software, medical devices, aftermarket parts for large turbines, and mo…

How to Use the Three-Step Quick Coaching Technique

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In the previous post, you learned how to determine if work planning, training, or coaching is necessary to improve the proficiency of a targeted behavior. 
Let's assume that at the end of the questions, the answer to improving the behavior is coaching. 
So, let's explore how to use a quick three step method that follows a modified Tell, Ask, Tell sandwich method.The three core steps:Tell the person something you like about what they did or how they did it.Ask them how they could improve the targeted behavior to achieve the desired proficiency.Tell them something specific about what you like about how they will go about improving their behavior.Start by connecting on a positive note. No one likes to be called out. "Constructive criticism" still stings. Notice in this technique, you never told the person that they did something wrong. Your focus is on incremental improvement until they achieve the desired level of proficiency. This may take one or more systematic approxi…

How do you know when to do work planning, training, or coaching?

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Coaching Diagnostic with the Triad of Performance When you are not getting the level performance you expect, then you must determine what’s causing it and take the appropriate action.Ask the questions, document how you know your answers are correct, then take the right action.1. Does the person know “what” to do? If you can demonstrate how you know they know “what” to do, then move on to the next question. If not, then it’s time to sit down with them to do work planning, so it is clear what they are to be doing and at what level of proficiency.2. Does the person know “how” to do it? How do you know? Have they demonstrated proficiency doing it in the past? If not, get the person training.3. Is the person doing it at the required level of proficiency? After you’ve answered the first two questions in the affirmative, and performance is still not there, now it’s time to coach. A part of coaching is to explore obstacles blocking optimal performance and work with them to resolve those issues…

FAB - The Persuasive Language of Selling

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Features, Advantages, and Benefits (FABs) are the components to communicate persuasively.Feature: A characteristic of your product, service, company, or self.Advantage: Explains how your Feature meets the Functional needs of what the product does better than competing ways.Benefit: What the customer gets that meets their Business and Human Needs.For example: Feature: PlasticAdvantage: Won’t rustBenefit: Few replacements caused by rustFABs are irrefutably logical. You can say them in any order, and they’ll make sense. For example, “You can lower your budget for replacements damaged due to rust by using our plastic versions that won’t rust.” Or, “Getting versions that won’t rust, such as those made from plastic, will definitely lower your replacement budget.”Learn your product knowledge, especially your Unique Selling Points using FABs. Why? Because the missing Advantages and Benefits become the signs and symptoms that point to the fact that the customer doesn’t have the Feature that pr…

Goal Setting – Reflect, Set, and Energize

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According to the many research studies on goal setting, without a doubt, those of you who write your goals and define a plan on how you will accomplish them will achieve far more than those of you who don’t. We don’t need research studies to tell us that – it’s just common sense. Think about it; if you don’t know what you want, you won’t write a goal. If you do know what you want, and you don’t write it, life will intervene, you’ll forget about the goal you held in your mind, and before you know it, it’s gone.The more frequently you review your goals and the more you vividly imagine with all your senses, that you have achieved the goal, has also been demonstrated to lead to significantly higher rates of achievement.There are now several additional research studies that demonstrate the effect your mindset has on your ability to achieve your goals.  At the turn of the century, Henry Ford said, “If you think you can or can’t, you’re right!” This is as true today as it was back then.Take …

Selling at "C" Level

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For many of you, selling at the CEO, COO, CLO, CFO, etc., level means that you're talking with someone engaged in leading the company through the implementation of the company's Vision. A vision is a picture of what the company is trying to create.Achieving the Vision is often done through "Strategic Initiatives." Some of these initiatives are incremental, and some are huge. Either way, these initiatives get funding. If what you're selling can be aligned with a Strategic Initiative, then the C-Level person you're interacting with can move money from one budget to another within their span of control to acquire your products and services.Strategic initiatives are assigned to an executive-level champion who is responsible for making sure it gets done. So, for you, the moment you start interacting at the "executive" level (VP, EVP, Director, and other Sr. Executives) you should automatically shift from selling products and services to selling how you c…